A case of convergence rather than derivation, I'd say.
The OED indicates that the name "rosella" for the plant Hibiscus sabdariffa,
also called the Indian or red sorrel, is perhaps a corruption of the French
name for it "l'oseille de Guinee" (sorrel of Guinea). The first recorded use
in this context was in 1857.
As to the name of the parrot, the OED is unequivocal in tracing the
derivation from "Rose Hiller", and ultimately from Rose Hill, NSW. The first
recorded use dates from 1838.
Paul Taylor wrote:
> As possible alternative/convergent derivation.
> The calyx of Hibiscus sabdariffa (and related species) is also known as
> a "rosella"; it is used to make "Rosella jam".
> The plant is believed to have originated in Sri Lanka, but is now found
> worldwide. (Plants found in northern Australia are thought to have been
> introduced by Indonesian fishermen "thousands of years ago.")
> It's a good source of vitamin C, and was probably used to ward off scurvy.
> While I can't find any references to the Royal Navy using Rosellas, it's
> possible that they were tried given that Captain Cook was busy trying to
> find a cure for scurvy, including things like sauerkraut and malt extract!
> Since Rosellas are bright crimson in colour, it makes sense that the name
> was also given to the local crimson parrots. This ties in to "Rosehiller"
> given their phonetic similarity - but which came first??
> Paul Taylor Veni, vidi, tici -
> I came, I saw, I ticked.
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